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Circle Eight Premieres Guildford In The Great War

Published on: 24 Jul, 2014
Updated on: 24 Jul, 2014

By David Rose

Circle Eight premiered its latest film, Guildford in the Great War, to a full house at the Electric Theatre on Saturday (July 19) and celebrated its own 50th anniversary too.

The film is a fascinating and moving look at the town and its people during the First World War. Narrated by Matthew Alexander, it blends lots of images from Guildford at that time with general archive film from the period.

GGWThe Circle Eight team have done a great job in making this film about an important part of Guildford’s modern history.

Featuring local events and what was also happening on the war front across the world at the time, the film looks at how the town received the news of the outbreak of the war, the men who soon enlisted and those who stayed behind and worked in munitions or on the land.

The film covers the Belgian refugees who came here, the Queen’s (Royal West Surrey) Regiment and its depot at Stoughton Barracks, local military hospitals and the infamous Zeppelin raid on St Catherine’s in 1915.

The war memorial in the Castle Grounds and our services of remembrance are included, with a tear-jerking conclusion that recalls some of those 500-odd men from Guildford who joined the services and never returned.

The film crew also went to the Western Front to shoot some scenes, including the Menin Gate at Ypres in Belgium.

I think it is the best film yet made by Circle Eight – but perhaps because I briefly feature in the film adding some historical details, loaned the film makers some vintage photos, suggested a few stories, and my great uncle Charles Tubbs is also featured as one of those young Guildford men who paid the supreme sacrifice.

After the interval the audience was treated to another new Circle Eight film – a comedy based on a skit that the Government had banned people from eating cakes! Many current and former Circle Eight members feature in the short film and a number of local locations were used in the film.

That was followed by a film presented by chairman and founder member Terence Patrick and stalwart Martin Bridger that looked back over the amateur film makers’ 50 years. It featured interviews and clips from Circle Eight’s many award-winning productions.

It was a night to reflect on the sadness and tough times of the Great War and to celebrate some great local film making.

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test One Response to Circle Eight Premieres Guildford In The Great War

  1. Brian and Sam Miller Reply

    July 24, 2014 at 4:35 pm

    This was an excellent production which we found both informative and moving.

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